a Monthly International Newsletter
December 2014

Ohtsuka head                 








"The only difference between the possible and impossible is one's will"

-Hironori Ohtsuka




In This Issue
Editor's Notes
Wado Books
Out From Darkness
Belt Exams
Zen Stories
Moral Wisdom
Wado Seminar
Wado Agenda
WIKF Seminars with Sensei Wicks
Suzuki Cup
Other Seminars and Events
WIKF Wado Seminar-Wicks
Join Our Mailing List
    Editor's   Notes
AW photo
Ray Hughes

Have a Great Holiday Season

From all the people involved with this newsletter,   
"we hope you have a wonderful holiday season."

Thank you for your support and all the great input you have given us.

Our goal is to do better next year.

-Newsletter staff



Welcome to the world of karate history, philosophy, other martial art information 


Dear Karate Enthusiast;


The purpose of this newsletter is to pass on historical information, philosophical views and activities of interest to karate martial artists around the world. Please send your article, event or activity with a photo of the instructor and/or event organizer by the 20th of the preceding month to get your information in this newsletter. Please send your text in a Word document. Please send posters and pictures in small jpeg files, thank you. 


Instructors, please forward to other karate enthusiasts,  

thank you.



Volunteer Staff

Contact Us


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Wado Ryu Karate
We are continuing with another writing from Master Otsuka's book Wado Ryu Karate, published by Masters Publication. This book can be purchased at Amazon.com. 



Physical Strength, Mental Strength, Technical Strength 

by Master Otsuka 



No matter which martial art, it is desirable that these three elements excel for every individual. Training does help, but talent, (what one is born with) also separates the good from the worse.


Of the three, if any one of them excels the opponent's, then, one has that much advantage over him. If physical and mental strength are identical, then technical strength becomes the deciding factor. And so on and so forth.


If one strength is below that of the opponent's level, if another strength is particularly excellent, then that strength can cover for the weaker strength. Even if one is physically weak, his technical superiority may put him at an advantage over him. However, even if physical and technical strengths excel, if the mental strength is not sufficient, the former two cannot be well utilized.


If any of the three is too weak, then it will serve as the downfall of that individual. There can be situations where a small person beats a bigger, stronger, but mentally weaker person. Also, I have seen an individual's technical strength excel in training, but weaken considerably in a contest. This is because mental strength is weak.


One can have mental and technical strength, but have little physical strength and lose. Sometimes, none of these even matters. In my youth, in the 7


year of the Taisho era, there was a contest between a foreigner, who was a wrestler and a Japanese judo expert. There were not too many individuals who belonged to the Kodokan at this time. The wrestler was quite skilled and handily defeated numerous others, but this judo expert was able to place the wrestler in an arm lock and lay him on his back. The audience was cheering for the judo expert, but something happened. The wrestler just got up, raised his left arm and shook the judo expert off. It was no contest. And I have heard many other similar stories. 


If there is too much difference between the physical strengths of the opponents, it would be similar to me twisting an infant's arms. Especially nowadays, when non-Japanese individuals train in the martial arts, it is important for individuals to train hard in technique, physical strength and especially, mental strength. Also, one must also consider the differences in weight of the participants when a Japanese and non-Japanese engage in contest.




Robert Hunt
Robert Hunt


Out From Darkness

Itosu and Higaonna


The Karate Tapestry - Part 7 

by Robert Hunt




           There are times when the course of history bends like bamboo in the storm and shoots off in unsuspected directions, like a shooting star unhappy to be contained in such a confined space as the Milky Way.


            Sometimes we can pinpoint the bend. Columbus stepped onto the beach of Santo Domingo and the world was never the same. A group of revolutionaries threw tea bags into Boston harbor and freedom arose.


            The day in history when the karate world was ignited by a spark that would eventually become a meteor can similarly be defined. Itosu Ankoh stepped onto the floor of a middle school in Okinawa in 1904 and told a bunch of kids to line up. The ancient, disciplined, battle art of ti, theretofore reserved for a selection of worthy and dedicated disciples in midnight graveyards or secluded courtyards, became the property of mankind and wound its way to the gymnasium where I studied in 1964 and the shiny dojo where I teach now in 2014 and to millions of others.


            Who knows if Itosu did the right thing? There are those who say that karate would be better off not popularized and still "deadly". But, if Ogawa Shintaro, the commissioner of schools for Kagoshima prefect, had not been impressed by a demonstration of Itosu's karate and, if Itosu had not made public a letter extolling karate virtues as a way to build better citizens, neither you nor I would kno

w anything about it. Karate would have faded into the maelstrom of the modern world, like buggy whips and train robberies, no longe


r relevant. 






Click  HEREto read the rest of the article              


To contact Robert Hunt  





Ray Hughes


Belt Exams-A Conflict of Philosophies

By Ray Hughes



Part One-The Debate

Belt exams and promotions have been the center of philosophical debate for as long as organized martial arts have existed. It is a great example of conflict within conflict. First, should there be belt promotions, and if so, how should they be administered?


There are two contrasting philosophies on whether there should be belt exams and promotions. One view believes belt exams contradict the philosophy of Bushido (the Way of the Warrior); to hone one's physical skills, to nurture humility, and to battle the war of "self". They believe the seven deadly sins of mankind (wrath, greed, sloth, pride, lust, envy, and gluttony) have a direct relationship to the instability of the warrior (practitioner). It is felt the seeking of rank, which could fit into several of these categories, feeds the inner demon of man. This view feels "One should train for the sake of training, not to receive an award."


Karate training is a martial art, which means many of its customs and protocols come from the military. This would include rank. This side believes that if rank should be awarded, it should be awarded at the discretion of the superior and not because of personal desire. Therefore tests are not needed, the superior already knows who is worthy of rank.


The other view of this argument believes there are many positive benefits that can come from the use of the belt promotion process. The point here is that it is a process. This side believes the good out ways the bad, if administered properly. They believe that the key is to understand the nature of man. The nature of man is to battle ego; but it is also understood that man requires certain things; such as the need for motivation, to understand where one is within their growth, to focus on small attainable goals, and so on. These elements can be taught through the proper use of the belt exam and promotion process. 



To read the rest of this article click HERE


Ray Hughes

Scottsdale Martial Arts Center





Doug Jepperson1
Doug Jepperson

                              by Doug Jepperson  



I don't know if any of you have found time to watch football, as I know that everyone that reads this newsletter is constantly training. But between your four or five hour daily karate workouts. Did you happen to watch the Giants play a week ago? Odell Beckham of the New York Giants made the most ridiculous touchdown catches ever.


His leap in the air alone was significant but to reach up and catch the football one handed was crazy.


It was the perfect combination of speed agility, balance, coordination and speed.


Social media exploded afterwards with tweets from Richard Sherman, LeBron James and Michael Irvin and pretty much everyone who saw the play.


"That's the greatest catch I've ever seen," Victor Cruz tweeted.


Besides some sticky gloves what did it take to make a catch like that?

Remember the ABC's agility, balance, coordination and speed.


Most karate instructors these days teach agility skills and coordination development, but how many teach balance?


How many people in karate even think balance is important?    


How many people in karate even think balance is important?


Unless you have a life long dream of joining the Flying Wallendas' you probably do not think about balance much.


And it is often only during a DUI test that you may wish you had spent more time on balance training. 




ClickHEREto read the rest of this article

Doug Jepperson
Park City Karate



Martial Art Humor

We all need a little humor in our life.  If you have a joke, send it in.

                  Zen Stories 


Learning the Hard Way


The son of a master thief asked his father to teach him the secrets of the trade. The old thief agreed and that night took his son to burglarize a large house. While the family was asleep, he silently led his young apprentice into a room that contained a clothes closet. The father told his son to go into the closet to pick out some clothes. When he did, his father quickly shut the door and locked him in. Then he went back outside, knocked loudly on the front door, thereby waking the family, and quickly slipped away before anyone saw him. Hours later, his son returned home, bedraggled and exhausted. "Father," he cried angrily, "Why did you lock me in that closet? If I hadn't been made desperate by my fear of getting caught, I never would have escaped. It took all my ingenuity to get out!" The old thief smiled. "Son, you have had your first lesson in the art of burglary."




We all need a little Zen in our Lives. If you have a story, please send it in.


thinking man
Moral Wisdom
 Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake.
~ Napoleon Bonaparte

Disclaimer: Titles                   bow


One of the most difficult areas that this newsletter has to deal with is the use of instructor titles. We are very sensitive to this issue and do not want to offend or insult anyone. To simplify this daunting problem we will use the following guidelines with the use of instructor titles:


a. The correct title of the instructor(s) must be in the article or seminar information submitted by the author or event organizer.

b. All captions that we place under photos will be:
  1. Japanese instructors: Last name followed by the title Sensei.

  2. Non-Japanese instructors: The title Sensei followed by the last name of the instructor.

c. Any title and name that is placed in this newsletter by newsletter staff will use the title of Sensei.



We consider the title "Sensei" a very prestigious title



          Wado Seminars
             and Events
Wado Agenda
by Rob van Leeuwen

Info on other International Wado Events 


WIKF Wado Ryu Karate Seminars with Sensei Wicks WIKF  




All courses are open to Wado practitioners (unless stated) and will include traditional Wado Techniques including- OHYO, KIHON GUMITE, TANTO & TACHI DORI, (KNIFE &SWORD DEFENCE) IDORI (KNEELING DEFENCE) AND KATA

Jon Wicks
Sensei Wicks



DECEMBER 5th-7th Sweden - contact -Michael ObergOberg.co@gmail.com 

2014 Suzuki Cup
Saturday, December 6, 2014
Master Suzuki

Dallas, Texas

a sanctioned USA Karate Event



The Suzuki Cup is held each year in honor of the late Wado master Tatsuo Suzuki, Sensei.  It is a premier regional karate event that draws hundereds of athletes from several states across the country.    The members of the Academy of Classical Karate proudly host this PRE- Registration only event and welcome participants to Plano, Texas on December 5-6, 2014.

  • Elite Kumite Seminars
  • Team Kumite Events
  • US Team MembersWIKF
  • International Athletes
  • Over 350 Athletes
Tournament Host and Director: Brody Burns-bburns@planodojo.com 
For additional information: planodojo.com



 Other Seminars and Events




      12/6   Suzuki Cup                                 Brody Burns
                Dallas, Texas                              bburns@planodojo.com

      12/19-21  International Marmara Karate Cup      Ercument Tasdemir
                      Istanbul, Turkey                        tasdemir@turkkaratedo.com



     1/25   Te Kenjustsu
                  Tournament/Seminar                            Tony Rios
                  Whittier, CA.                                     323-327-1974                 

       3/1       New York International Open             1-347-400-5632
                   New York                                       Luis Ruiz

       3/8       Arizona Karate Championships & USA Karate Nat'l Qualifier
                   Phoenix, AZ              Ray Hughes 602-315-5011


      4/10-12   Karatenomichi World Federation
                    International Open Shotokan Karate Seminar 
                    Contact: Tom Hyder tomhyder@azshotokan.com

      4/18   Alabama Open              Keith & Sarah MacConkey
                Birmingham, Alabama  kmacconkey@usamartialarts.com

      4/24   Champs Cup 2015        Samantha Hostettler
               Atlanta, Georgia          champscup.com


         5/16     SC Open                   info@carolinakarate.net
                    Greenville, SC            864.277.2008

       5/30   Tenn State Championship and
                     USA National Qualifier
                      Jo Valdez   fightingspiritkarate@comcast.net 


       8/15            Wado Kai Karate-Do World Cup
                            Nagoya, Japan

      12/26-1/5 2016    The 13th Pan American Maccabi Games
                                Santiago, Chile
                                Dr. Sternberg      skusajka@aol.com
                                Caren Lesser       lesserc@bellsouth.net